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March 30, 2018:

THE VIEW FROM HERE

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, I’m a little bit nasally this evening, and I’m also a little bit country as well as rock-and-roll. The weather, to put it mildly, has been eclectic – rain and chilly, then a moment later in the 90s and like summer. So, I think this may be my allergies so I’m just taking my preventatives just in case. And that is the view from here. The view from there is entirely different, however. The view from there is here and the view from here is there and these here notes are beginning to feel like a Samuel Beckett play.

Yesterday was kind of a Samuel Beckett day. I actually got close to eight hours of sleep – close, but no ceegar. But once up I had a lovely and long telephonic conversation with my gal at the publishers, who happily told me the books had been shipped and will be here today. Furthermore, there now doing the small fix to correct the little problem they had with this first batch, so those test books will come next week. But I’m excited to finally get the books in. Unfortunately, the helper is gone until Monday and that’s when they’ll go out. But that will give me the time to sign them and insert the special little extra thing that comes with the book. After that, I went and picked up one little package and no mail, after which I came home.

I made myself two count them two tuna sandwiches, both excellent. That was my main meal o’ the day. Then I did some work at the computer, then at the piano. I don’t really remember what all else I did, but somehow the afternoon just flew by, like a gazelle in a bumper car. At some point I sat on my couch like so much fish.

Last night, I began watching a motion picture on the Flix of Net entitled Un Plus Une, a French motion picture from France from 2015 directed by one of my favorite French directors, Claude Lelouch. Frankly, I had no idea he was making movies anymore (he’s eighty now). This one stars Jean Dujardin and is about a composer who goes to India to score a new Bollywood film of Romeo and Juliet. I was very much enjoying it until I fell asleep for an hour, so I shut it off and will finish it this evening.

Then I had to proof the booklets for the two new releases, which I did, did a couple of minor corrections, and those are now sent to the printer. I then heard the first half of the master to Cole Porter (I’d already heard and approved the master for Pieces of Eight), and it sounds really good so far. I also put a couple of items up on eBay. I’ve been doing little tests, just for the sake of interest. I literally think nothing sells on eBay anymore because it’s simply a morass of gouging dealers, or people who think they know about things they know nothing about, charging exorbitant prices. Certainly all the fun has gone out of eBay. It was so wild and wooly in the early days and so much fun. You could find huge bargains because basically there were no dealers at all on eBay, just people rummaging around in their houses and garages and selling interesting stuff. It’s not that their weren’t wonderful items – the first piece of illustration art I ever bought was from eBay and I still have it and it’s still just about my favorite piece. It wasn’t cheap, about $3,000, but if someone listed it now, a dealer, it would be 15 or 20K. And no one would buy it. I see so much stuff that’s been sitting there for years, the same items at the same prices, because the listing part is free. People put stuff up for a million dollars – it’s just laughable. There are tons of illustration art paintings, absolutely mundane things listed for five thousand bucks, the kinds of things I used to pick up for three hundred bucks. There really aren’t any more bargains, and there are so many items that it’s just about impossible to find anything if you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for and even then it can be a slog.

It’s basically a bunch of folks who closed their mom-and-pop stores and became sellers – it’s how they make their livings, but it’s turned eBay into an overcrowded zoo. I put up a painting that I absolutely knew wouldn’t sell but I wanted to see how many views it would get – in the old days it would have gotten huge views because it was a really cherce item – in seven days it had 141 views. No way to sell with so few views, and I guarantee you all the viewers were dealers. I put up the Kritzerland release of Evening Primrose – it was up for two weeks and had eleven views and no sales. I took it down. I put up a unique and rare signed (to me) Stephen King Cujo – the inscription is priceless if you know my second film, and it’s a fun association copy. It had about forty views and no one cared, just as I knew they wouldn’t. I knew it wasn’t going to sell, just as I know that in the old days it would have sold on day one. And believe me, it was at the low end of the signed copies on eBay. So, I found three other really hard-to-find books, one of which literally is the only first edition anywhere – there are literally no first editions on eBay or the ABE or anywhere that I could find, other than some old auctions. And this copy is the only signed copy I’ve ever seen. I think it’s had five views. I make them seven day auctions and I will be very surprised if the three books sell – and they’re not unreasonably priced at all, but they are priced in such a way that dealers couldn’t triple their money, which is what these gouging dealers wish to do. So, it’s been interesting, experiment-wise.

We had only a handful of orders yesterday, but I’m grateful for whatever comes in. After all that, I relaxed and listened to music. And that’s the view from here.

Today, I will, of course, be picking up the package of books, I’ll eat, do some banking, hopefully print out more orders, but mostly just have a relaxing ME day, which I absolutely need. I’ll finish the Lelouch, too.

Tomorrow we have our stumble-through, then some of us will go grab a bite to eat, then I’ll relax. Sunday I’ll relax until it’s time to mosey on over to The Federal for sound check and then we do our show. Then the following week is very busy with meetings and meals and planning the May Kritzerland show.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, pick up books, eat, bank, and relax. Today’s topic of discussion: It’s Friday – what is currently in your CD player and your DVD/Blu and Ray player? I’ll start – CD, lots of upcoming releases. Blu-ray, not a thing. Your turn. Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland – and that’s the view from here.

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